Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 5
participation drive in cooperation
with When We All Vote, a nonpartisan
organization founded by former first
lady Michelle Obama.
The " Good Trouble Voting Campaign, " named for Congressman
Lewis's motto, enlisted students and
staff to help hundreds of students and
their family members register to vote.
While the district's schools are in remote learning mode because of the
coronavirus pandemic, some volunteers even visited peers' homes to help
them fill out forms and navigate the
state's personal ID requirements from
a safe distance. They also volunteered
as poll workers.
Students throughout the state participated in similar voter registration
campaigns. And, as they gear up for
Jan. 5 Senate runoff elections, young
volunteers are trying to register newly
eligible students who turn 18 between
the presidential and special elections.
In those runoffs, Republican Sens.
David Perdue and Kelly Loeffler will
face Democratic challengers Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock. If both
Democrats win, each party would
have 50 Senate seats, allowing Vice
President-elect Kamala Harris to
break the tie and grant control of the
chamber to the Democrats.
At a recently held graduation cer-
the protection the mask gives to other people.
A study in the journal Physics of Fluids this July
shows how easily the virus can travel far from a face
shield or from a mask worn improperly or with an
That can make a big difference when it comes to
spreading the virus. For example, a study of the seasonal
flu found face shields stopped a majority of large
droplets after a cough by someone with the flu but did
little to block smaller aerosolized particles of the virus.
Within a half hour of someone coughing, these smaller
particles dispersed through the room, and the face
shield blocked only about 23 percent of them.
The CDC does not recommend anyone use a face
shield alone and is still evaluating how effective
face shields are against the coronavirus when
used with other protective gear. Homemade cloth
masks containing at least two layers of fabric are
considered more effective than wearing nothing,
but the CDC does not consider homemade masks as
real protective gear. They do not protect as well as a
Whether face masks are homemade or medical,
teachers or students should check to make sure
there are no gaps between the mask and skin on the
nose, chin, or cheek. While health-care workers use
commercial testing kits to ensure their masks fit
properly, at least one study found that people could
make an accurate test at home using an essential oil
diffuser and a two-gallon bag.
What should teachers do to help
students see their faces?
This can put teachers, particularly those of young
children and English-language learners, in a difficult
emony, which had been delayed because of virus precautions, Atlanta
students hung posters with a QR code
that linked to a website with voter registration information.
In the suburbs, Pham and other volunteers plan to continue outreach campaigns, strategically messaging young
would-be voters through social media
apps and doing remote classroom visits
until the Dec. 5 registration deadline.
Pham, 16, the daughter of Vietnamese immigrants, said her interest was
nurtured as a child by watching her
father vote. She wants more students
" who look like me, " meaning students
of color, to participate.
" With all eyes on Georgia and everybody paying a lot of attention to it, we
are going to keep going, " she said. " We
are going to keep doing the work and
really push the voter registration message to as many people as possible. "
Ava Nieman, a junior at a private
school north of Atlanta, said hearing
from classmates made voting seem
more accessible to teens.
" I definitely feel like it's more relatable to a high school student, " she
said. " It can be intimidating. "
In a state that proved that " every vote
Spitzer noted that teachers may need to increase
body language and voice expression to make up for
smiles and other normal expressions that are likely to
be covered by masks.
Tan noted that some have recommended teachers
use face shields in conjunction with regular cloth
or surgical masks and remove the face mask during
parts of a lesson that require students to watch
the teacher's mouth to help students follow their
expressions better. The face shield can still help
prevent larger droplets from getting on a teacher's
face or eyes if a student coughs or sneezes while
they are close. But Tan cautioned that repeatedly
lowering and raising a face mask during the day
increases teachers' exposure to the virus.
In August, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration
also cleared a transparent plastic surgical mask for
use in hospitals and schools during the pandemic.
There have not yet been experimental studies
comparing the relative effectiveness of transparent
versus cloth or fiber face masks in reducing COVID-19
transmission. However, Allysa Dittmar, the president
of ClearMask, the company which makes the mask,
said it could be useful for " those who can benefit
from improved visual communication, such as
children, older adults, deaf and hard of hearing
people, and those who do not speak the same
counts, " candidates will likely work
hard to court even the youngest voters.
Some teen supporters have already
launched TikTok accounts to support
their favorites in the coming runoffs,
sharing short videos to make their case
in Generation Z-friendly ways.
Georgia High School Democrats
plan to work with other state chapters
of the organization on their election
efforts, said Vice Chair Sadie MacIntyre, a 16-year-old from Gwinnett
The organization's young voter efforts before the general election included outdoor registration booths
and social media campaigns. But
many teens grew interested much earlier, when they learned about specific
issues of concern to them, she said.
When demonstrations over racial
justice sprung up around the country, the group launched an effort to
explain a stalled state hate crimes law
to their peers. MacIntyre remembers
seeing a protester carrying a sign with
a link to the group's online campaign.
" I was like, 'Oh my gosh. We did
that. My organization did that,'â " she
Julian Fortuna, a Decatur high
school senior who serves as the organization's treasurer, voted in October,
three days after his 18th birthday.
" When you get a sense of your
voice and the impact it can have, I
think it sticks with people, " he said,
recalling his emotions as he watched
results come in. " The margin is so
close. Everyone who stepped up
made a difference. "
Such memorable experiences can
set young voters on a lifelong path of
civic engagement, said Kiesa, of CIRCLE. But they don't have to be tied to
a big moment in a presidential race.
Students' interest may be sparked by
a meaningful classroom conversation
about a specific policy issue, by hearing from a guest speaker, or by volunteering on a local campaign.
In Atlanta, learning about voting
has driven students' interest in other
forms of engagement, too, said Lewis,
the Atlanta social studies coordinator.
Since the district's voter campaign
started, students have started advocating for changes in local transportation issues, forming affinity and
advocacy groups with their peers, and
volunteering on campaigns.
" Voting isn't just about picking a
winner or a loser or a specific candidate, " Lewis said. " We've really tried
to empower our students with the
understanding that voting is about
advocating for yourselves. Voting is
just one vehicle for that. "
Physics of Fluids
olds voted in the 2020 election,
compared to 42 percent to 44 percent in 2016, CIRCLE projected. And
voters in that age group preferred
President-elect Joe Biden by a 25point margin over President Donald
Trump-61 percent to 36 percent-
the organization found after analyzing data from the Associated Press.
That means the youth vote could
have been the difference-maker in
some key states, including Georgia, where efforts to encourage high
school students to vote have been
building for years.
" If we want to help sustain youth
engagement, then we really have to
start thinking about preparing students before they reach 18, " said
Abby Kiesa, CIRCLE's deputy director. " And we have to start before the
last three months before the election. "
Educators in Georgia credit years of
incorporating lessons about civic engagement into all areas of the curriculum, including classes like science,
where students learn how decisions
from state and federal lawmakers can
affect issues like the environment.
In Atlanta, students as young as
elementary school read books about
voting in language arts classes, Lewis
said. And this year, the district engaged students in a massive voter
Virus droplets are seen
dispersing when someone
From remote learning for young children to
playground infection risks, schooling under the
pandemic is raising a lot of questions for teachers and
education leaders. This new research column aims to
help readers understand what the research says-and
doesn't say-about our new context for learning.
If you have a question, please send it to
coughs or sneezes while
wearing a plastic face
shield (in the top two lines)
and when wearing a cloth
face mask (bottom).
EDUCATION WEEK | November 18, 2020 | www.edweek.org | 5
Education Week - November 18, 2020
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Education Week - November 18, 2020
Education Week - November 18, 2020
Did COVID-19 Really Drive Teachers to Quit?
As Election 2020 Grinds On, Young Voters Stay Hooked
Getting Schools Open: A No-Win Decision as Virus Cases Surge
‘Schools Need to Be Bolder’ About Reopening, Public Health Expert Says
What to Watch as Biden Administration Charts Its Own Path on Education Policy
Who Could End Up Heading Top Senate Panel on Education Issues
Families Not Engaging Remotely? Rethink the Problem
The Election Was Traumatizing For Many Students (and Educators)
The New Face of Teacher Demoralization
What the Research Says
Letters to the Editor
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Education Week - November 18, 2020
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - CW2
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 1
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Briefly Stated
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 3
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - What the Research Says
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 5
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Did COVID-19 Really Drive Teachers to Quit?
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 7
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Getting Schools Open: A No-Win Decision as Virus Cases Surge
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - ‘Schools Need to Be Bolder’ About Reopening, Public Health Expert Says
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 10
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 11
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - What to Watch as Biden Administration Charts Its Own Path on Education Policy
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 13
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Who Could End Up Heading Top Senate Panel on Education Issues
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 15
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Families Not Engaging Remotely? Rethink the Problem
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - The Election Was Traumatizing For Many Students (and Educators)
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - Letters to the Editor
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - 19
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - The New Face of Teacher Demoralization
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - CW3
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - CW4
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - SC1
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - SC2
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S1
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S2
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S3
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S4
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S5
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S6
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S7
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S8
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S9
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S10
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S11
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S12
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S13
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S14
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S15
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - S16
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - SC3
Education Week - November 18, 2020 - SC4